Oak Tree in Field - Image 661877 (© Kip Ladage)

Kip’s Comments 11-24-20

  Three of Many Shades of Gray Even though the sun was not able to burn through the clouds today, the normal activities of our world – manmade and natural – continued as necessary. As a photographer/wildlife observer, I looked around a bit to watch what was happening. (Actually, I had hoped to paddle in …

Many Sandhill Cranes - Image 661703 (© Kip Ladage)

Kip’s Comments 11-23-20

  Dropping Like a Swarm of Blackbirds For the past several weeks a friend of mine has been keeping track of a large flock of sandhill cranes that have been feeding around the Sweet Marsh area. He regularly calls with updates, but until today I had not been able to view the gathering of the …

Great Blue Heron in Autumn - Image 661153 (© Kip Ladage)

Kip’s Comments 11-10-20

  Hidden, But Still Visible My day was chopped up with various activities – plenty of windshield time, acquiring PPE, and webinars. Only a little time was available to look around for wildlife. Since the wind had changed directions with our weather change, I figured ducks would be moving through Sweet Marsh. When waterfowl is …

Young Bullfrogs in Hand - Image 661124 (© Kip Ladage)

Kip’s Comments 11-8-20

  You Are Going the Wrong Way Little Ones Our many days of unseasonably mild weather, while very nice for us, is confusing local reptiles and many amphibians. With each passing warm day I am seeing more and more small frogs along the edges of our local wetland. Normally our frogs and toads would be …

Wood Duck on Downed Tree - Image 660280 (© Kip Ladage)

Kip’s Comments 10-27-20

  Wood Duck Drake Being A Wood Duck During the very few minutes I had to look around in nature today, I spotted a drake wood duck doing what wood ducks do – they sit on logs or in trees or on water. This guy looked mighty impressive standing on top of a downed tree. …

Whitetail Deer Silhouettes - Image 654266 (© Kip Ladage)

Kip’s Comments 9-23-20

  No Color and Few Details Needed  In our natural world there are “things” that are recognizable with only the slightest amount of information. The shape of poison ivy leaves, the shadow of a praying mantis, the fragrant aroma of American lotus, the texture of pine cones, the call of a pileated woodpecker, and the …

Cardinal Flower and Asters - Image 653690 (© Kip Ladage)

Kip’s Comments 9-20-20

  A Bird Friendly Community Because of Habitat The City of Tripoli is considering a project to earn “Bird Friendly Community” designation. The requirements are not terribly difficult, yet they are challenging enough that every city cannot simply fill in paperwork and earn the recognition. There is work to be done if a community wishes …

Fat Tire Biking at Sweet Marsh - © Kip Ladage

Kip’s Comments 8-5-20

  Almost an Anniversary Five years ago on August 16 I fell with my fat tire bike while riding on the dikes at Sweet Marsh. As a result of the fall I suffered a traumatic brain injury, tore the connective tissue in my wrist (repaired with surgery), nearly put my teeth through my lip, laid …

Lesser Yellowlegs - Image 646292 (© Kip Ladage)

Kip’s Comments 8-4-20

  Birds on the Mudflats Since we seldom see rain anymore, our river levels have really dropped. Such conditions are not necessarily good or not necessarily bad (not referring to the impact on crops). High levels and low levels are part of the natural patterns we experience. I prefer low rivers over high flows.    …

Leatherflower Blossoms - Image 645905 (© Kip Ladage)

Kip’s Comments 8-3-20

  What I Was Supposed to Be Doing Do you ever have one of those days when “life” seems to pile on and you don’t have enough energy to crawl out from under the demands? Such was the case for me by the end of today. I had no spark, no drive, no nothing…it would …